Course curriculum

  • 2


    • The Importance of Autonomy

    • What Can You Control?

    • Be Careful of the "We Aren't Allowed to..." Narrative

    • Be Quietly Rebellious

    • Share Autonomy with Students: Co-Creation of Learning

    • Teachers: Share Autonomy with Support Staff

    • Reflections on Autonomy

  • 3


    • Creativity

    • Getting Started with Creativity

    • Creative Projects that Boost Student Engagement and Reduce Teacher Workload

    • Two Sources of Creativity: Your (and Your Students'!) Interests

    • An Example of Teacher Creativity

    • Why Autonomy and Creativity Sometimes Freak Us Out

    • Reflections on Creativity

  • 4

    A Few More Important Ideas

    • Online Teachers: Offer Students Choice

    • School Leaders: Share Power and Control with Faculty

    • Time Management Tip: How Not to Get Overwhelmed When Trying Something New

    • Creativity is a Skill Set, Not a Gift

    • Before You Go, Help Me Improve this Course

Meet Your Instructor

Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson had been teaching for several years when he and his wife started their family. Suddenly, things got overwhelming--fast. Determined to maintain his passion for teaching while also being a good parent, Mike embarked on a quest to find better work-life balance. This self-designed research project resulted in the book, The Well-Balanced Teacher: How to Work Smarter and Stay Sane Inside the Classroom and Out. Now, as an education consultant, Mike supports teachers on topics such as differentiated learning, social-emotional learning, and, of course, teacher health and balance. Mike received a National Milken Educator Award as a classroom teacher, and in 2020, he received the Outstanding Educational Leader Award from NHASCD for his work as a consultant. When not consulting, Mike can be found hanging with his family, tending his perennial gardens, and searching for new running routes around his home in Durham, NH.

Included in This Course

You’ll explore key ideas, learn practical strategies, and gain helpful resources to help you better understand and manage work-life balance.

  • Renew your enthusiasm for teaching--reenergize your practice

  • Deepen your understanding of the connections between autonomy, creativity, and motivation

  • Gain many new ideas for how to have more freedom in your teaching

  • Gain some practical insights into how to manage autonomy and creativity so you don't get overwhelmed

  • Gain access to a wide array of supportive resources to help you continue to think about this important topic

  • When you finish the course, you can print a certificate showing 3 hours of professional learning.

  • You will have access to this course for a year, so you can go back in over and over again.


  • Mike does a great job of re-framing the basics and helping teachers/leaders consider where they have room to improve. His thoughts on Autonomy and Creativity are right on point!

    Thomas Porter, Mountain Brook, AL

  • The best thing about Mr. Anderson's courses is that his stories, suggestions, and instruction come from the experience of a real teacher. You can tell he was and still is a teacher. His ideas, topics, and instruction are applicable, and he speaks to all the concerns that teachers have or deal with continually. And he even speaks to administrators about the heart of the teacher, reminding them of the challenges of the classroom.

    Jennifer Shoemaker, Mountain Brook, AL

  • Mike captures the idea of autonomy perfectly. We ask our kids to have a growth mindset with learning, so we need to model that for them. Though it is scary, it is okay to have an assessment where you learn WITH your students. Mike guides you through this process seamlessly!

    Michael Castano, Timberlane, NH

  • Mike Anderson offers suggestions to implement ideas in real life classrooms. His course has inspired me to think creatively and try a new approach to engage students in their learning.

    Kristi Parker, SAU 25

  • Mike's ease with the topics, having experienced the challenges of teaching and working with administrators, create a comfortable pace and informative course.

    Rebecca Cummings, Pelham, NH

  • Creativity is a spark that motivates great teaching. Beat Teacher Burnout: Rekindle Your Professional Fire reminds us of the importance of taking risks in autonomous action to pursue student and teacher inspired learning.

    Justin Bentley-Melle, Timberlane, NH

  • The set up of the course is great for everyone! The videos are short and paired with text to grab your attention and keep you engaged. Includes great tips!

    Gina OConnor, Timberlane, NH

  • This course offers realistic ideas that can be implemented right away.

    Kate Capistran, Pelham, NH